By Brecklyn Wilde
Ever since we found out that Mama had cancer, we have had many challenges. We have also had many blessings, and Jesus has helped us see those things. At first, Jesus gave us our community, who prayed for us, and helped comfort us. Then it was the people we served who cried when we left, gave us donuts, and took care of us. They were so sweet, and we still miss them, but God has shown us the way to see through all of the ocean of trials. This reminds me of one of the verses in a song called “Oceans”.
You call me out upon the waters, the great unknown, where feet may fail. And there I find you in the mystery in oceans deep,
Picture this: you are Peter. Jesus tells you to go to the other side of the sea of Galilee, but he doesn’t tell you why. So you go across, but when you are in the middle of it, a storm comes up, the boat is rocking, and there is water all the way up to your ankles! You are so so scared, and then, on top of it all, you look up, and see a ghost, walking on top of the water! You are really scared now! Everyone is screaming around you, when the ghost calmly says, “Take courage, it is I. Do not be afraid.” Then you realise, and yell back, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water”. Then he says, “Come”, and you have no choice to do, but walk through the storm. You step out of the boat and hold onto the railing, expecting to fall, but you don’t! The water feels as if it is concrete! You start walking, but then you remember the wind, the waves and water, and you feel afraid, and then you start sinking! You cry out “Lord, save me!” and you feel someone reach out for your wrist and lift you out. It’s Jesus! When you are back in the boat, finally the wind dies down, and everything is calm. Then Jesus says “Oh you of little faith, why did you doubt me?” Then everyone in the boat around you starts saying “Truly you are the son of God”.
Even though the ocean is sometimes windy and stormy, we can also look around, and see Jesus, walking on the scary, windy waves, helping us to keep on walking, and picking us up from the storm. He helps us to see where the end of our journey is, in heaven, where there are no storms, no wind, and no rain.
Whenever you have a trial, always look to Jesus, and trust in him, and Jesus will give you blessings, even more blessings then you will ever have troubles. I have so many examples of blessings, but I can only tell you a couple.
When we came back from Costa Rica, we thought that nobody would really care that we were back, but God knew what we needed, and when we came back, everyone greeted us, and when we went inside our house, we saw that they were taking care of us, by giving us things, like toys, and pictures, but most of all love. Even today, people are always coming to our door, to give us food, play with us, visit us, and best of all, love us and pray with us.
Whenever you are scared, or something bad is happening, always ask Jesus for help, and he will send you blessings. God has taught us how to see his son through the storm, so whenever there is a trial, we can see Jesus through it.
Right away Jesus made the disciples get into the boat. He had them go on ahead of Him to the other side of the Sea of Galilee. And after he had dismissed the crowds, he went up on the mountain by himself to pray. When evening came, he was there alone, but the boat by this time was a long way from the land, beaten by the waves, for the wind was against them. And in the fourth watch of the night he came to them, walking on the sea. But when the disciples saw him walking on the sea, they were terrified, and said, “It is a ghost!” and they cried out in fear. But immediately Jesus spoke to them, saying, “Take heart; it is I. Do not be afraid.” And Peter answered him, “Lord, if it is you, command me to come to you on the water.” He said, “Come.” So Peter got out of the boat and walked on the water and came to Jesus. But when he saw the wind, he was afraid, and beginning to sink he cried out, “Lord, save me.” Jesus immediately reached out his hand and took hold of him, saying to him, “O you of little faith, why did you doubt?” And when they got into the boat, the wind ceased. And those in the boat worshiped him, saying, “Truly you are the Son of God.” (Matthew 14:22-33)
We are praying for you.
By Jessica Wilde
When I look in the mirror, I do not recognize the face I see. Then I look again, this time a little more closely, and I see three different faces staring back at me: My own face, Anne and Maribel.
The first face I see in the mirror is my own. It is the face of a cancer victim. It is the face of pain from a disease that is attempting to destroy the fiber of my being. It is the face of a cross that seems to be unbearable at times. It is the face that fears what the future may or may not hold.
The second face I see in the mirror is bald like me, but because of oppression, she had no hope for a future. The second face is Anne Franke and the thousands of other woman, men and children who suffered the shame of having their heads shaved due to racism, and most faced death shortly afterwards. It is a face of tears as dreams and lives were cut short. And now, the lock of my own hair that sits next to my Mary statue reminds me of the mountains of hair from all the victims heaped up at the museum in Auschwitz...victims who were sheared like sheep before being slaughtered like animals. It is a face of horror and oppression.
The third face is the face of Maribel. She too is suffering from cancer. But, she has hair; a sign that like Anne, she also has no hope for a future. She is the face of the poor and marginalized in our world. Just like Anne, she too is oppressed. She is in pain and is dying from a cancer without treatment because she was born in the wrong country or in the wrong social class. I've seen many faces like hers before--in a small adobe Mexican house, she writhes in pain from a cancerous tumor growing in her belly as the priest administers the Sacrament of the Sick, while in Costa Rica, she spends days in a crowded hospital waiting room. Even though health care is available to her, she is still sent home with pain medicine to die while the rich with the same diagnosis would be treated and live.
So yes...the faces in the mirror haunt me. I can't help but look back at my own bald head and be sad for Anne and Maribel. Unlike them, I am not oppressed. I am receiving treatment and I freely choose to lose my hair to have a chance at a future. While cancer is a huge cross, it turns out that my baldness is a gift from God and a sign of hope. So please do not pity my baldness but instead help me to fight for and pray for the other faces that I remember when I look in the mirror...the faces of the poor, the marginalized, the victims of war and violence, often forgotten and oppressed.
Today, please join me in praying for all the other faces in the mirror besides my own that suffer and die from oppression.
Dear Lord I pray for the souls that perished in Aushwitz and the many other concentration camps, prisons, and ghettos during wars of the past century. I pray for the poor who are oppressed and suffer and die due to neglect. Dear Lord please end hate and oppression. Please open our eyes to truly love and care for each other, regardless of race, religion, place of birth, or class. Thank you Lord for the opportunity to receive medical care. Thank you for the wonderful doctors and nurses who take care of me. Thank you Lord for taking my hair and giving me a future filled with hope.
On a Mission
Two passionate parents and their four children are excited to bring His Word to everyone in need while living a life of Gospel poverty as missionaries. They invite you to join them on a journey to encounter our global neighbors that Jesus commands us to love through works of charity and service.